Amanda Skofstad | April 11, 2020
For Christians and Jews worldwide, the novel coronavirus pandemic is escalating in a spiritually resonant season. The days leading up to Passover and Easter naturally conjure thoughts of plagues, isolation, restraint, darkness, remembrance, waiting, hope and deliverance, but under self-quarantine, these ancient spiritual themes are embodied in all-too-present physical realities.
How are Jews and Christians persisting in worship when timeless traditions — fasting and feasting, prayer and almsgiving, penance and purification — are stripped of their temporal, physical and social components?
And how are clergy near and far supporting their flocks when the rituals most comforting in a time of uncertainty and loss — liturgical gatherings, shared meals, physical touch, clergy presence at hospital bedside and graveside — are, for the safety of living, forbidden?
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